Weep not for Okorocha, but weep for Nigeria that is turning justice and the practice of democracy upside down.
Looking at His Excellency, Owelle Rochas Okorocha seated with the wife at the corridor of a police station at Owerri, I arrived at the conclusion that the power of power, is incredulously powerful and crushing, especially when one is on the other side of the law, or when one’s immunity effervesce. He is Lucky that His Excellency, the Governor of Imo State, Hope Uzodinma is not interested in erection of statutes. If not, that scene at the police station in which Okorocha and the wife sat on non-distinguished chairs, would have been sculptured to adorn a popular road junction in the future.
From the stories surrounding Okorocha’s arrest, he was alleged to have broken into Royal palm spring estate, which was wrongly or rightly sealed by the state government.
Okorocha would have known that it was a booby trap to get him into the wrong side of the law. If he had good advisers, all he would have done to prove the rightful ownership of the property was to approach the courts, or simply allow the property revert to the good people of Imo State..
No! He would have none of that. Instead, he relied on his distinguished factor and the excellence in himself to undermine the power of power. He decided to trespass into a sealed property, engaged the government officials in altercation, lost his cool and ended up in a handcuff. He forgot that the power in power, is a monster that has no regard for the past, especially that, which has no moral rectitude.
The Okorochas public disgrace would have been avoided and unnecessary if he had followed the due process of law. It wouldn’t matter if he eventually lost at the supreme court. He would have honestly saved himself and the family those embarrassing moments.
Our politics is like a merry-go-round. It is an all conquering system. It is a winner takes all process where the king exerts his influence on and out of his kingdom. Like the African Movie Magic, one can easily predict the next story line. That is the sad commentary about our political system. Many of us saw it coming. There is usually a shield around corrupt public office holders, once they are in the right camp. However, the political shield, and cover from prosecution, and harassment shall be removed, when one crosses the red line into the enemy territory to speak directly, or indirectly against one’s party. Taking this plunge is a political suicide in this part of the world.
Sometime in January 2021, Okorocha went to Port Harcourt, and openly showered praises, poured encomiums on Governor Wike, and the PDP over PDP’s achievements and developmental strides in Rivers State. He would have known that his act was a political harakiri. Of a truth, that was the day he lost his party’s immunity on the platform of the 2019 Akwa Ibom declaration, which states, “Once you join the APC, your sins are forgiven.” Okorocha forgot that the immunity was just for a season and therefore, does not cover all seasons. He forgot that the immunity conferred is to ensure one remains silent, not to be heard, not to be seen and especially when one’s moral stature is questionable. Besides, the immunity is tied to the display of consistent good behaviour. It is an unwritten convention, and every political actor knows it.
Furthermore, there is also an unwritten convention, to use the anti-graft agencies to get the corruption status of political office holders for checkmating malfeasance behaviours and pastoral movements by deviants in the future. Since 1999, the ruling party would usually investigate suspects perceived to be corrupt and disloyal to the cause of the party. The investigative outcome becomes a baggage tag on each political actor. The party then keenly monitors everybody, watch the body languages, to see who would be the next deserter into the enemy camp. The type of response by the party would depend on the political asset or liability of the actor-in-mischief. If the deserter could cause the party electoral pain in the next cycle, the hound shall be released to remove the shield of immunity from the deserter That is why Okorocha should have learnt from the others, who are sitting quietly in the hallowed chambers enjoying their party conferred party immunity.
Anyway, the dog no de chop dog esprit-de-corps movementers have swung into action. The APC governors have swiftly rallied round a comrade in need. I am sure they would pressure the governor to soft pedal on this matter, so that the perceived spirit man does not go naked in the market square and before the public.
The first positive sign that the reaching out is working is that the former governor, his sons in-law, Chief Uche Nwosu and Dr. Uzoma Anwuka, some of his political appointees failed to appear in the magistrate court to face the alleged charges against them. However, if he must survive the flurry of attacks to come, he would have to denounce any unwholesome movement as the journey towards 2023 rages.
Irrespective of how this matter ends, the Imo State citizens whose commonwealth have been brazenly looted over time, are likely to remain the victims. I do hope, that HE Hope Uzodima shall prove me wrong that it is not business as usual. The Imo people deserve to know the truth about the palm estate and other assets.
Grace and peace!!!